Roseslug sawflies are the larvae of sawflies
Despite their name, roseslug sawflies aren’t slugs (and they’re also not true flies!). Rather they are sawflies that feed on roses in their larval stage. They are mostly green on top and yellowish along their sides with a brown head, growing up to 1/2 inch long. Adults emerge in early spring and lay their eggs on the underside of the leaves of host plants. The larvae will emerge a few weeks later and begin feeding on the leaves before dropping to the soil to pupate a month later.
There are three species of the roseslug sawfly:
- European roseslug sawfly (Endelomyia aethiops)
- Bristly roseslug sawfly (Cladius difformis)
- Curled roseslug sawfly (Allantus cinctus)
Signs and symptoms of roseslug sawfly
Signs and symptoms of rose slug sawfly in plants includes:
- Heavy defoliation
- Scorched appearance of leaves
- Leaf skeletonization
Damage to plants is often cosmetic and doesn’t have many long-term effects. Extensive infestations could leave to plant death
Managing roseslug sawfly
To manage roseslug sawfly, get your roses inspected this spring by an ISA Certified Arborist from Hansen’s Tree Service. Early detection is essential in their control and larvae can be removed by hand and placed in a bucket of soapy water. Natural enemies like small mammals and birds can control roseslug sawfly.
Your arborist may apply insecticides if the infestation is large.